Cracking the Case Method - Tom's Blog - Law School Guide

Are you an anxious and frustrated first-year law student? Fight back with Cracking the Case Method — Legal Analysis for Law School Success!

In Academic Success by admin2 Comments

Seeing that your 1L classes didn’t teach you outlining and exam-taking skills? Struggling to put it all together? Seeking a detailed, thoughtful, and transparent path to academic success? If so, Cracking the Case Method can help by answering the questions your law school classes don’t. As a proud co-author, I'm very pleased to announce that West Academic Publishing has just released the second edition of Cracking!

A Law School Guide Geared for Academic Success

Cracking is a respected academic success guide that helps students develop the analytical skills and learning strategies necessary for excelling on law school exams. Cracking provides concise, clear, and in-depth instruction on all aspects of academic success, including such topics as:

 
  • Overall strategies for approaching your 1L semesters, including:
  • Reading cases and preparing for class efficiently and effectively;
  • Practicing legal analysis and extracting crucial information during your classes; and
  • Preparing for law school exams.
  • The Case Method, why law school professors rely on it, and how studying cases helps students develop analytical skills.
  • Sources of law and hierarchies of authority.
  • How to expertly read cases to extract legal issues, legal principles, and judges’ rationales for adopting and applying those principles.
  • How to skillfully prepare case briefs, with annotated examples.
  • The major types of legal arguments, with illustrations of each type of argument.
  • How to use class discussions to practice legal analysis, illustrated with annotated excerpts from actual first-year class discussions.
  • Exam preparation tools, including:
  • Structuring outlines to clearly state rules and their underlying policies in order to provide an analytical framework of the law, with detailed examples and sample annotated outlines;
  • Developing checklists, flow charts, and mind maps, with illustrations; and
  • Practicing exam-taking skills with prior exams.
  • Transparent approach for analyzing and writing exam-answers, including:
  • Identifying relevant legal theories and issues;
  • Marshalling and using facts in your arguments;
  • Structuring and writing your analysis, with sample annotated exam answers that respond to actual 1L exam questions; and
  • Using time-management strategies during exams to ensure you don’t waste your precious time.

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Praise for Cracking the Case Method

Cracking has been praised by experts in leading law school academic success programs, law students, and practitioners, including the following testimonials:

 

Cracking the Case Method is the best, most accessible book I’ve read about the law school classroom. I assign it to my orientation students and recommend it to every incoming 1L. It is the perfect how-to manual for learning legal analysis in the first year.”


Kristen Holmquist

Director - Experiential Education and Academic Support

Lecturer in Residence - UC Berkeley School of Law

“I reviewed several preparatory materials before entering law school, and Cracking the Case Method is by far the best! It’s short, funny, and to the point. It helped me through every aspect of law school (case briefs, exams, a typical class, etc.) and eased the stressful transition. I found it indispensable during an overwhelming first week of classes, and still continually refer to it. My study time is now much more effective. I come into class feeling prepared with a good understanding of what to focus on. This book is constantly recommended by me, my classmates, professors, and other law students as the most effective law school prep guide. Don’t make the mistake of thinking a few Google searches can show you everything you need to know before entering your 1L year. Take my advice, and theirs, and read this book!”


Chanté Eliaszadeh

UC Berkeley School of Law

Class of 2020

Cracking the Case Method is a fantastic resource that touches on and explains every academic aspect a student needs to know in order to be successful in the first year of law school. As an incoming 1L with minimal legal experience, I felt somewhat unprepared and nervous for the upcoming year. This book’s witty insights and comprehensive explanations quelled any nerves I had, helped me create a foundation of legal knowledge, and provided me with tools I still use as a 3L.”


Brett Meyerhoff

UCLA School of Law

Class of 2018

“The authors provide an accessible and often humorous guide to the Case Method. In addition to de-mystifying legal studies for the new student, the book provides a sound foundation for the future practitioner; the object of the Case Method, in the main, is to allow the application of legal principles to help clients resolve their problems.”


Hector Gallegos

Intellectual Property Group Litigation and Trial Partner

Morrison & Foerster LLP

Cracking is great for some last-minute help during this fall semester or starting fresh in your spring semester. While law school can sometimes be confusing and overwhelming, you can survive, improve, and succeed!

 

If you would like some personal help succeeding on your exams, I provide individual tutoring to help students get the most out of their law school experience and excel on exams. I founded Thomas Holm Legal Consulting LLC to help students perform their best when it matters most. I have over twenty years experience teaching first-year law students in the classroom and individually.

 

For example, while serving as director of the Lawyering Skills Clinical Program at UCLA School of Law, I co-developed a legal methods course called “Introduction to Legal Analysis.” This course was designed to achieve the same goals as Cracking, demystifying law school and teaching students core analytical skills essential for academic success. I also spent countless hours discussing outlining, exam-preparation, and exam-taking skills with individual students who sought my advice.

 

And for the last fifteen years, I have taught exam-taking strategies for BARBRI Law Preview, a national company that offers preparatory instruction for students commencing their first year of law school.  Moreover, I specialize in legal writing. Strong legal writing skills translate directly into writing compelling exam answers.

 

Contact me to get started!

Seeing that your 1L classes didn’t teach you outlining and exam-taking skills? Struggling to put it all together? Seeking a detailed, thoughtful, and transparent path to academic success? If so, Cracking the Case Method can help by answering the questions your law school classes don’t. As a proud co-author, I'm very pleased to announce that West Academic Publishing has just released the second edition of Cracking!

A Law School Guide Geared for Academic Success

Cracking is a respected academic success guide that helps students develop the analytical skills and learning strategies necessary for excelling on law school exams. Cracking provides concise, clear, and in-depth instruction on all aspects of academic success, including such topics as:

 
  • Overall strategies for approaching your 1L semesters, including:
  • Reading cases and preparing for class efficiently and effectively;
  • Practicing legal analysis and extracting crucial information during your classes; and
  • Preparing for law school exams.
  • Reading cases and preparing for class efficiently and effectively;
  • The Case Method, why law school professors rely on it, and how studying cases helps students develop analytical skills.
  • Sources of law and hierarchies of authority.
  • How to expertly read cases to extract legal issues, legal principles, and judges’ rationales for adopting and applying those principles.
  • How to skillfully prepare case briefs, with annotated examples.
  • The major types of legal arguments, with illustrations of each type of argument.
  • How to use class discussions to practice legal analysis, illustrated with annotated excerpts from actual first-year class discussions.
  • Exam preparation tools, including:
  • Structuring outlines to clearly state rules and their underlying policies in order to provide an analytical framework of the law, with detailed examples and sample annotated outlines;
  • Developing checklists, flow charts, and mind maps, with illustrations; and
  • Practicing exam-taking skills with prior exams.
  • Transparent approach for analyzing and writing exam-answers, including:
  • Identifying relevant legal theories and issues;
  • Marshalling and using facts in your arguments;
  • Structuring and writing your analysis, with sample annotated exam answers that respond to actual 1L exam questions; and
  • Using time-management strategies during exams to ensure you don’t waste your precious time.
Praise for Cracking the Case Method

Cracking has been praised by experts in leading law school academic success programs, law students, and practitioners, including the following testimonials:

Cracking the Case Method is the best, most accessible book I’ve read about the law school classroom. I assign it to my orientation students and recommend it to every incoming 1L. It is the perfect how-to manual for learning legal analysis in the first year.”


Kristen Holmquist

Director - Experiential Education and Academic Support

Lecturer in Residence - UC Berkeley School of Law

“I reviewed several preparatory materials before entering law school, and Cracking the Case Method is by far the best! It’s short, funny, and to the point. It helped me through every aspect of law school (case briefs, exams, a typical class, etc.) and eased the stressful transition. I found it indispensable during an overwhelming first week of classes, and still continually refer to it. My study time is now much more effective. I come into class feeling prepared with a good understanding of what to focus on. This book is constantly recommended by me, my classmates, professors, and other law students as the most effective law school prep guide. Don’t make the mistake of thinking a few Google searches can show you everything you need to know before entering your 1L year. Take my advice, and theirs, and read this book!”


Chanté Eliaszadeh

UC Berkeley School of Law

Class of 2020

Cracking the Case Method is a fantastic resource that touches on and explains every academic aspect a student needs to know in order to be successful in the first year of law school. As an incoming 1L with minimal legal experience, I felt somewhat unprepared and nervous for the upcoming year. This book’s witty insights and comprehensive explanations quelled any nerves I had, helped me create a foundation of legal knowledge, and provided me with tools I still use as a 3L.”


Brett Meyerhoff

UCLA School of Law

Class of 2018

“The authors provide an accessible and often humorous guide to the Case Method. In addition to de-mystifying legal studies for the new student, the book provides a sound foundation for the future practitioner; the object of the Case Method, in the main, is to allow the application of legal principles to help clients resolve their problems.”


Hector G. Gallegos

Intellectual Property Group Litigation and Trial Partner

Morrison & Foerster LLP

Cracking is great for some last-minute help during this fall semester or starting fresh in your spring semester. While law school can sometimes be confusing and overwhelming, you can survive, improve, and succeed!

 

If you would like some personal help succeeding on your exams, I provide individual tutoring to help students get the most out of their law school experience and excel on exams. I founded Thomas Holm Legal Consulting LLC to help students perform their best when it matters most. I have over twenty years experience teaching first-year law students in the classroom and individually.

 

For example, while serving as director of the Lawyering Skills Clinical Program at UCLA School of Law, I co-developed a legal methods course called “Introduction to Legal Analysis.” This course was designed to achieve the same goals as Cracking, demystifying law school and teaching students core analytical skills essential for academic success. I also spent countless hours discussing outlining, exam-preparation, and exam-taking skills with individual students who sought my advice.

 

And for the last fifteen years, I have taught exam-taking strategies for BARBRI Law Preview, a national company that offers preparatory instruction for students commencing their first year of law school.  Moreover, I specialize in legal writing. Strong legal writing skills translate directly into writing compelling exam answers.

 

Contact me to get started!

Categories

Archives

Comments

  1. It was a privilege to have read the first edition when I was a law student. The book is an excellent, concise overview of the methods you need to succeed in law school. Cracking was required reading at my law school, and following its suggestions made me feel more comfortable when preparing for and taking exams. I would highly recommend the second edition, which contains even more helpful advice and examples about how to optimize the studying experience.

  2. Such an articulate, accessible summary on the outlining process. I love your examples!

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